Shorthorn Apparel

Have you checked out the Shorthorn Apparel we have available? The Shorthorn online store will be open from July 18th – August 25th.  All proceeds benefit the Shorthorn Youth Development Fund. Click here to order your apparel. Check out what we have available below! T-Shirts, Windbreaker, Sweatshirts, Hats and Youth Shirts!

**Please note these are pre-orders, apparel does not enter production until the ordering window is closed. **

We appreciate your support of the SYDF!!

Adult Shirts
Adult Sweatshirts
Hats
Youth Shirts

Summer Fun!

Kaylee

Besides being at work, I have been taking summer classes. Most of my extra time has been spent on homework and tests. I have visited the Kansas City Zoo and have gotten to try some cool places throughout the town. I have had a few moments off as part of my Junior Hereford Board of Director duties and when I traveled to Madison, Wisconsin, for the National Hereford Expo.

Ashley

I will say this has been my less active summer because of the internship, but I wouldn’t change it for the experiences that I have gotten. Besides Kaylee, Jana, and I going to Luke Comb’s concert, I have enjoyed spending time with my nieces at the pool and watching them grow up. Since I live at college, I don’t get to be there as much as I would like. My friend Jack and I went to Angus Junior Nationals in Grand Island, Nebraska, to surprise my roommate Avery and watch her retire from the junior board. We are also in preparation for show season, which includes cleaning the trailer, packing the trailer, and clipping calves, so some long hot summer days will come soon.

Jana

Outside of work, I have been spending my afternoons exercising at the gym and writing letters/postcards to my friends and family back home. A couple of weeks ago, Ashley, Kaylee, and I went to Arrowhead Stadium and saw Luke Combs, Lainey Wilson, Riley Green, and Flatland Cavalry in concert! It was such an amazing show! I have also enjoyed going out to line-dance and two-step! I flew to Tennessee to watch my brother exhibit his shorthorns at our state beef expo and celebrate the Fourth of July with my family! I will fly home again for my school’s livestock judging camp in Knoxville! After that, I plan to squeeze in a day or two to do all Kansas City things and see all the sights! It is crazy that we are already halfway through the summer, but I can’t wait to see what else is in store!

ASA Staff’s Top 5 Road Trip Songs

The ASA staff is packing up and getting ready to head to this year’s 2023 National Junior Show. We wanted to share our top 5 road trip songs. Are some of these on your list?

Safe travels!

Montie

  1. Sold (Grundy County Auction)- John Michael Montgomery
  2. Crocodile Rock- Elton John
  3. El Paso- Marty Robbins
  4. That’s Amore- Dean Martin
  5. Big Iron- Marty Robbins

Jana

  1. Long Live Cowgirls- Cojo/Ian Munsick
  2. Dixieland Delight- Alabama
  3. Our Song- Taylor Swift
  4. 9 to 5- Dolly Parton
  5. Sweet Caroline- Neil Diamond

Cassie

  1. It Wasn’t Me- Shaggy
  2. Goodbye Earl- The Chicks
  3. Wine, Beer, Whisky- Little Big Town
  4. Pretty Girl from Missouri- Dawson Hollow
  5. Kansas City- Tech N9ne

Amy

  1. It Wasn’t Me- Shaggy
  2. Should’ve Been a Cowboy- Toby Keith
  3. Fast Car- Luke Combs
  4. Cowgirls
  5. It’s My Life

Wade

  1. Fantasy- Mariah Carey
  2. Anything Shania Twain
  3. My Ex’s Best Friend- Machine Gun Kelly
  4. Any 90’s country list
  5. Anything ABBA

Shelby

  1. All I See Is You- Shane Smith & the Saints
  2. Pay No Rent- Turnpike Troubadours
  3. Walking in Memphis- Lonestar
  4. Dream- Fleetwood Mac
  5. Shotgun- George Ezra
  6. All Shania, T. Swift, George Strait

Ashley

  1. Purple Banners- Jason Nutt & Highway 70
  2. Men & Coyotes- Red Shahan
  3. Traveler’s Song- Flatland Cavalry
  4. Oklahoma Breakdown- Stoney LaRue
  5. Long Hot Summer Day- Turnpike Troubadours

Heather

  1. Rich- Maren Morris
  2. Chocolate- The 1975
  3. Flatliner- Cole Swindell & Dierks Bentley
  4. I Will Never Let You Down- Rita Ora
  5. Wow- Post Malone

Kaylee

  1. 7 Summers- Morgan Wallen
  2. Baby I’m Burnin’- Dolly Parton
  3. Dibs” Kelsea Ballerini
  4. F.Y.S- Mitchell Ferguson
  5. Oklahoma Breakdown- Stoney LaRue

Interns Advice for Junior Nationals

Jana

What were your favorite junior nationals you have attended?

I attended the 2019 Shorthorn Junior Nationals in Lebanon, Tennessee! This was such an exciting week of connecting with other exhibitors from all across the country. I also really enjoyed getting to compete in several contests outside of the show. This allowed me to learn more about the beef industry and develop various skills!

What are your favorite show snacks?

My mom always makes ham rolls for our shows. They are the best!

Best advice to give to a junior going to junior nationals?

Take advantage of every opportunity! Make lots of new friends! 

What not to forget?

Don’t forget playing cards! My friends and I love playing card games in our downtime!

What is the first thing you put on or in your trailer before leaving?

Show clothes! Multiple times, I have walked past my garment bag on the way out of the door. I have learned to make sure I grab those first!

What do you make sure to pack for yourself?

I never know what kind of hair day I will have, so I always pack extra bobby pins and hair spray.

Ashley

What were your favorite junior nationals you have attended?

My favorite junior national was the 2020 Santa Gertrudis Junior Nationals in Texarkana, Arkansas. It was a hot one, but I had so much fun! Overall, I was happy with my placement in classes and contests. That year I met more friends, connected with old ones, and just had the time of our lives, making memories that will last a lifetime!

What are your favorite show snacks?

I LOVE Ice Cream! That’s one thing, and I know all the Ice Cream spots at every state fair we exhibit. After a long day, a cookie and cream waffle cone is calling my name.

Best advice to give to a junior going to junior nationals?

The first junior nationals I went to as an exhibitor, I wish I would be done more and gotten out and connected with other juniors. I was shy and thought just a small-town girl with two cows. The best advice I can give you is don’t be like me, go out and talk to other juniors, hang out in a different state, and enjoy your time because it goes by so fast.

What not to forget?

Water Hose!!! I can’t tell you how many times we forgot our hose until we bought one that never left the trailer.

What is the first thing you put on or in your trailer before leaving?

Since we keep everything we need on the trailer all year and organize when we get home, I ensure we have show sticks. I have short arms, so I have an extra-large show stick for my larger cows and a medium for smaller calves.

What do you make sure to pack for yourself?

I make sure to pack my show harness. My harness stays in the office hung up, so I hang my show clothes with it.

Kaylee

What were your favorite junior nationals you have attended?

I have attended quite a handful of junior nationals for other breeds. My favorite was the 2020 Hereford junior nationals in Kansas City. That was an extremely hard year, and I didn’t finish my year like I wanted. It was mind-blowing to see how everyone was able to put it together. 

What are your favorite show snacks?

At shows, all I do is snack; I don’t eat any real meals unless we go out for dinner. I am a beef jerky person and will eat it any time of the day. I also enjoy Cheez-its, and my mom will slice up summer sausage and cubed cheese or slices, which is like my go-to snack. 

Best advice to give to a junior going to junior nationals?

Whether it’s your first or last or somewhere in-between, I feel that going to junior nationals is easy to forget to have fun as you are there. If you are like me, you are running from contest to contest and continuously caring for the cattle you brought. Take a moment and absorb everything around you. You are in a place for over a week with like-minded people who share the same passion you do. Make friends, hang out with friends, and grow your connections. 

What not to forget? Do not forget your belt, boots, feed scoop, show stick, and poop fork. These things are some of my family’s most overlooked items. So, remember to pack these items before you leave. 

What is the first thing you put on or in your trailer before leaving?

Typically the first thing I load onto my trailer when packing is feed. This usually goes into the nose, so it’s easier to load it than close the nose and start loading everything else. Next is usually panels, as those must be positioned, and you can stack things around them. Something I must check on the trailer before I leave is show sticks and a poop fork. 

What do you make sure to pack for yourself?

I usually make sure that my lucky number harness is packed. However, I triple-check that road snacks, drinks, earbuds, and chargers are packed before any adventure.

What are the interns up to?

Kaylee Mclnvale

What have you been doing these first few weeks? The first week I was here, I mainly worked on the online contests. I started the day those entries closed, so I spent about three days organizing all the files and getting those entered. Then I sent those off to the judges to be placed. I will post the top five as soon as I get those in, and we will announce that. Next, I inventoried all the prizes we had received and made lists of when or where we would get the following awards. Next, I have been working on the PowerPoint where all the online contest entries are displayed. This past week I sat and worked on quiz bowl questions, the cattlemen’s written test, and scripts that the board and announcer will use for junior nationals’ week. These scripts, including the judge and queen’s bios, will be announced weekly. Next, I have been working on all the contest folders for the week of junior nationals. I have also ensured we had every state’s flag for opening ceremonies. Finally, I spent one-afternoon reorganizing boxes for the junior nationals’ office as it would be easier to find things, and that way, cords were not completely tangled. This week, I worked on the top five for the judged contests. I also worked on getting showmanship heats done and have been working on completing small tasks that will make the week leading up to and the week of junior nationals much easier to navigate. Outside work, I have been taking summer classes and working on homework and tests. I have had a great few weeks being in Kansas City and have seen some incredible sites and eaten at some great places. The biggest thing I have learned is how to use Apple Desktop. I have been a PC girl for most of my life, so transitioning into Apple was a huge learning curve. I spent most of my first day playing with the computer to try and figure out the different shortcuts and commands that vary between the two systems.

Jana Owen

What have you been doing these first few weeks? I have been working on sending confirmation emails out to junior national competitors. I am a little over halfway through! My goal is to have them all completed by Friday! Working extensively with Digital Beef has taught me how to search, edit, and update animals within our registration system. I have to ensure everything is correct to have successful classes at junior nationals!

Ashley Osborne

What have you been doing these first few weeks? I learned much about working on a website and creating my first magazine these first few weeks! I first started out working on the exhibitor folder and getting my first draft completed. Moving through the past few weeks, I took over all social media posts for Facebook’s Throwback Thursday & Motivational Friday and the Websites intern blog post. In addition, I finished the meal ticket design, and they are ready to print. Last week, I had a lot of fun getting to know and work with Amy on the Shorthorn Country, and I have some big projects coming up soon. This week I will start working on the daily schedule that will be posted every morning of junior nationals letting you know the time and events for that day. As well as working on social media thank you posts to all our amazing sponsors. Outside of work, I have been spending time with my family and enjoying making memories in the barn and by the pool with my nieces.

Welcome Interns

What’s your name? Kaylee McInvale

Where are you from? Stephenville, Texas

Current/ Future? Currently a senior at Tarleton State University, majoring in Animal Science with a focus on production and minoring in Agriculture Economics. I will be graduating in December. I don’t know my plans afterward; however, I want to get my master’s.

What are you most excited about this summer? The fun adventures I will get to go on through the internship and with the other interns.

What is your agricultural background? I have been in the cattle industry since birth. My parents met at the National Western, and it was fate for me to grow in this industry. I’ve been handling and showing cattle since I could walk. I have helped them in the show barn and run several hundred heads of cattle. This has been my way of life, and I hope to continue.

Aside from necessities, what one thing could you not go a day without? Some sort of caffeine. While I have cut down my consumption of sodas, coffee, and energy drinks. I have learned that I still need some kind of caffeine every few days. That is probably one thing I could not go without.

What is something that always makes you smile? Dad jokes always get me. I live for corny jokes. I also enjoy the cow jokes even after I have heard them a million times. However, my dog usually makes me smile when he is his goofy self.

What’s your name? Jana Owen

Where are you from? I am originally from Taft, Tennessee, a small town in southern middle Tennessee.

Current/ Future Plans? I am an Animal Science major at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, so go vols! I plan to pursue a career in agricultural communications/youth events within the beef industry.

What are you most excited about this summer? I am looking forward to connecting with ASA members through junior nationals and other events this summer. I love listening to others’ stories and hearing about their passion for agriculture, specifically shorthorn cattle!

What is your agricultural background? I grew up on my family’s shorthorn cattle farm. I was heavily involved in 4-H and FFA through cattle and goat shows, judging contests, quiz bowls, speeches, portfolios, and everything. Through these youth organizations, I discovered my passion for agriculture and desired to work as an advocate for this vital industry. 

Aside from necessities, what one thing could you not go a day without? Spotify. Whether I’m working cattle, driving down the road, or working in the office, it’s always on! I listen to everything from fascinating podcasts and stories to Hannah Montana songs and classic country playlists.

What is something that always makes you smile? Spending quality time with my friends and family. Whether playing board games, eating at our favorite restaurant, or cheering on the Volunteers, I always enjoy laughing and having fun with them!

What’s your name? Ashley Osborne

Where are you from? Lathrop, Missouri

Current/ Future Plans? I am attending Kansas State University, majoring in Agricultural Communications and Journalism with a minor in Animal Science. I plan to return to my family farm raising purebred Santa Gertrudis and Star 5’s, pursue a career in agricultural communications and work with youth in the agricultural industry.

What are you most excited about this summer? Most excited to be back home working with my nieces getting their calves ready for this show season.

What is your agricultural background? I grew up in Sparta, Kentucky, on a cow-calf operation with multiple generations on the farm. We raised purebred Santa Gertrudis cattle in Kentucky until expanding our operation to Northwest Missouri in 2010. Since then, I have started my herd within our farm and expanded into the Star 5 program. We have raised multiple National Champions and Reserve National Champions and have won at least one State Fair Champion at every state fair with a Santa Gertrudis open show. Now I help run a Junior Show within the Santa Gertrudis breed that is “FOR THE KIDS,” it’s a nonprofit show that gives every child an opportunity to show and grow within themselves and not only walk away with money and award but walk away with a lifetime of experiences and memories.

Aside from necessities, what one thing could you not go a day without? My emotional support Stanley. I love drinks of any kind; water, soda, teas, and lemonades, so it’s a daily necessity that I have my Stanley with something in it.

What is something that always makes you smile? My family, friends, and my corgi. Those three things bring great joy into my life, and I love them dearly. If that’s us just having a family dinner on Sunday or us traveling to a show, we all have a good time and enjoy our time together.

Protect Your Investment

This time of year, a lot of money is being invested in future herd sires for both Shorthorn breeders and commercial producers. Plenty of preparations go into making the selection of your next bull, and we all enjoy the thrill of winning the bid at auction or striking the deal private treaty. However, the purchase is merely the beginning. You want to protect your investment to maximize his return to your operation, and proper considerations need to be taken to maximize the performance of your newest team member while attempting to minimize your risk.

The first step to minimize your risk in this purchase is making the decision regarding mortality insurance on your new purchase. We all know accidents happen, and it seems that Murphy’s Law (if it can happen, it will) most directly corresponds to the best animals in the herd. I would anticipate that if you brought in a new young bull, he’s probably going to be one of your better prospects, and the small insurance premium (usually 6% of purchase price) is worth the peace of mind it brings that you are financially covered if the new guy does the unthinkable during his first breeding season. If at all possible, freezing a collection of semen to store can be viewed as an ”insurance policy” that the bull’s genetic power isn’t totally lost if he isn’t walking the pastures.

It’s important to remember if you bought a yearling bull, you bought the bovine equivalent of a teenage boy. They are still growing and developing, and they need the nutrition to help them reach peak physical maturity. Getting a bull into the right shape for breeding season might require losing some extra sale day condition before turnout. Going from a sale prep ration to breeding cows out on pasture could be a bit of a shock to the system if you don’t help your bull transition to that exclusively forage diet.

Whatever your usual herd health protocol includes, it’s important to get your bull on the same program as the rest of the herd as soon as you can. Visit with the seller of the bull to see what measures they may have taken for herd health while he was still in their care. Proper vaccinations, pour on, and even fly control can be important to keeping your bull in the best of shape during the summer working months.

Before turnout, check to make sure that the proper DNA work has been done on your new bull. With the ruling passed by the ASA Board of Directors in 2022, any bull that you buy born on or after January 1, 2022 will need to be 100K genomic tested with ASA in order to register his progeny. You can log in to Digital Beef to see if he has been tested by the seller before you take possession. If his EPDs are highlighted in yellow, you are good to go. If not, you need to grab a DNA sample while he is still around the barn and it is handy to get.

In most cases, the seller of the bull will guarantee you that he will pass a breeding soundness exam (BSE). If the bull has not had a BSE at the time you purchase him, it is absolutely vital to have your veterinarian perform one before you turn him out. Catching the problem of an infertile bull is infinitely better when caught before turnout instead of when a chunk of your cows come back open. Most sellers will do everything they can to make the deal right if your new bull does pass a BSE and isn’t deemed fit to breed cows. It’s something you never want to have to discuss, but make sure you and the seller are clear on expectations from both sides if the bull isn’t a breeder. Refunds, sale credits, or replacement bulls are all ways I have seen this handled. Both sides need to be ok with whatever arrangement is struck.

Now that you’ve got him insured, fed right, as healthy as can be, and certified to be fertile, it’s time to put the new guy to work. It’s important to not put too much workload on your young bull in his first breeding season. Sometimes we forget that young bulls aren’t machines. They are being asked to grow, mature, and breed cows all at once, making it a tough stage of life. The old adage is that a young bull can handle one cow per one month of his age. If you are using him in a cleanup situation behind a round of AI, you can probably increase this number a little bit, provided you are getting decent conception rates with artificial insemination.

The perfect recipe for disaster when you bring home a new, young herd bull is to drive him to the pasture, open the gate, and kick him out with 40 cows and wish him well. You take proper care of the other major investments around your farm (tractors, pickups, hay balers). Your bull should be no exception, as he is a major investment in the future of your genetics. Taking the extra steps early on in his development can make the difference between sending your bull to town after one or two breeding seasons or having him properly developed to still walk the pastures at a ripe old age.

written by Matt Woolfolk, ASA Director of Performance Programs

2023 Interns

Welcome to our 2023 American Shorthorn Association Interns. We are looking forward to their arrival in May!

Jana Owen is a junior at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where she is majoring in Animal Science and minoring in Agricultural Communications. Jana grew up on her family’s Shorthorn farm in southern middle Tennessee. As an alumna of both 4-H and FFA, she enjoyed exhibiting cattle and goats and competing in multiple judging, quiz bowl, speech, and portfolio competitions. At UT, she loves staying plugged in with the agriculture industry through organizations like Block and Bridle, TN Ag Communicators of Tomorrow, Dairy Club, Livestock Judging Team, and Collegiate 4-H & FFA, where she serves as Vice President. Outside of these activities, she enjoys going to church, UT games, concerts, and thrift stores. Jana is passionate about the Shorthorn breed and is ecstatic to learn more about the association this summer!

Kaylee McInvale is currently a senior at Tarleton State University pursuing a degree in Animal Science and a minor in Agricultural economics. Kaylee wants to pursue a master’s and take a path into animal nutrition or reproduction. She is very active on campus as she is a Tarleton State Block and Bridle club member. She serves as the scholarship chair for the Alpha Zeta chapter of the Sigma Alpha Sorority. As well as she is currently serving as a Residential Leader for the Tarleton Housing Department. Kaylee has been raising and showing livestock all her life. She has raised Chianinas, Simmentals, and Herefords. She has helped her parents run cow operations like Circle M Farms and Foster Brothers Farm, registered Simmental and Angus farms. Kaylee served in various positions as a Texas State Junior Director for both Horn and Polled Associations. She was in various royalty roles for the Polled Association. Kaylee served as the 2020-2021 National Hereford Queen, leading her to where she is today. She is currently serving on the National Junior Hereford Board of Directors. She was elected to the board this past summer. Kaylee is looking forward to meeting and working with all of you this summer. Kaylee will be serving as our Junior Activities Intern.

Anna Bonnet is a junior agriculture media and communications major at West Texas A&M University. She is from Karnes City, TX where she grew up helping her family on their Brangus cattle ranch and showing cattle for many years. Throughout college she has had the opportunity to intern for several national livestock shows, growing her passion for the stock show and cattle industries. Anna is very excited to be joining us in Kansas City for the summer as the communications intern.

The New Season

As many of you are entering calving season, this is a good opportunity to remind you of the important information to collect in your calving book. There are some points that are mandatory for recording your Shorthorns into Digital Beef, as well as others that are vital pieces of the puzzle for our genetic predictions in early life traits. Some things will help you with management of the herd going forward from calving season. Below is a breakdown of the items you need to be prepared to take note of this year:

The essentials. These are the items that are required to record any calf into the registry: pedigree (sire and dam), birth date, an individual ID (tattoo), coat color, and whether the calf is horned, polled, or scurred. I know it’s not always easy to determine polled status at such a young age, but you will eventually need that data point when you enter your 2023 calf crop.

Calf measurables. Calving ease score and birth weight are useful pieces to the genetic evaluation puzzle to collect in the calving barn. If you’re unfamiliar with the calving ease scoring system, a 1 designates calves born unassisted, and the numeric score increases with the amount of assistance required to get the calf into the world. These data options are spelled out for you when entering calves into Digital Beef. For birth weight, you have the option to indicate if the weight you are recording was taken by a scale, a birth weight measuring tape, or a visual estimation. Please, do NOT record guesses by visual estimation. A scale or tape are miles more accurate than trying to guess a weight, and poor weights only hurt the quality of our genetic evaluation tools.

Record the entire crop. When you collect those calving ease and birth weights, record them into the record system on every calf in the herd, even if you do not intend to register them. A complete dataset tells the most honest picture of your genetics and does a better job identifying the outstanding and the underwhelming than only recording those you choose to register. This philosophy applies to all collected data points, not just calving ease and birth weight.

Consider the mother. Pre-calving body condition scores might be helpful in planning your nutritional needs postpartum, especially if your cows are coming up thinner than expected. Scoring the udder for teat size and suspension of the udder should be done within the first 24 hours after calving. Both udder traits are on a 1 to 9 scale, with 9s being very small teats and super tight suspensions. There are visuals available online to give you a reference to the scoring chart. The Beef Improvement Federation guidelines are the most helpful drawings I have found for clear definitions of the various scores.

Health records. Any treatments of cow or calf in the early stages of life are important to note. Having this information can come in handy later in the year when making decisions, or to jog your memory when that poor-doing calf at weaning is the same little guy you treated three times early on.

Personal info. If you want to record how much sleep you lost doing nighttime checks on your maternity ward, that’s up to you. While this data can’t be input into the registry, it might serve as a reminder to the sacrifices we make for our herd.

Best of luck with your calving season. While we might both be making middle of the night checks, wait until the sun rises to call and chat, just in case it’s the one night that all is calm out in the barn, and we can catch a few extra minutes of sleep.

written by: Matt Woolfolk, ASA Director of Performance Programs